Are Hardwood Houses Termite Proof?

A common myth about timber de-bunked!

There are a few common myths that our inspectors hear on a day to day basis. Whilst carrying out Building And Pest Inspections on The Gold Coast and Northern N.S.W one of the biggest questions we get asked is “The house is built from hardwood, termites don’t eat hardwood right?”

The biggest mistake a purchaser can make is to think because the house is hardwood there will be no termites. Yes, some hardwoods may be resistant to an extent or slow to consume. However, it may all depend on whether the milled timber is treated, heartwood or sapwood and the species.

We must remember most Australian native trees are hardwoods and are a termites natural food source. Coptotermes spp. will hollow out living hardwood trees for ideal nesting habitats.

A typical case study shown below was a hardwood framed home built in the late 80s and was attacked from the subfloor to the roof by Coptotermes acinaciformis in Northern NSW.

How do I avoid termite attack?

  1. Ensure a building and pest is carried out before you purchase a property
  2. If you own a home, maintain annual inspections every 6-12 months.
  3. Install adequate termite protection if your licensed pest inspector recommends it.
  4. Remove or fix any issues that have been outlined in a termite inspection report.

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